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Melanoma Treatment (PDQ®)

  • Updated: 03/19/2014

Table 2. Regional Lymph Nodes (N)a

NXPatients in whom the regional nodes cannot be assessed (e.g., previously removed for another reason).
N0No regional metastases detected.
N1–3Regional metastases based upon the number of metastatic nodes and presence or absence of intralymphatic metastases (in transit or satellite metastases).
Note: N1–3 and a–c subcategories assigned as shown below:
N Classification No. of Metastatic Nodes Nodal Metastatic Mass
N11a: micrometastasis.b
b: macrometastasis.c
N22–3a: micrometastasis.b
b: macrometastasis.c
c: in transit met(s)/satellites(s) without metastatic nodes.
N3≥4 metastatic nodes, or matted nodes, or in transit met(s)/satellite(s) with metastatic node(s).

No = number.
aReprinted with permission from AJCC: Melanoma of the skin. In: Edge SB, Byrd DR, Compton CC, et al., eds.: AJCC Cancer Staging Manual. 7th ed. New York, NY: Springer, 2010, pp 325-44.
bMicrometastases are diagnosed after sentinel lymph node biopsy and completion lymphadenectomy (if performed).
cMacrometastases are defined as clinically detectable nodal metastases confirmed by therapeutic lymphadenectomy or when nodal metastasis exhibits gross extracapsular extension.